Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Amazon DVD rentals

Hari and I recently signed up for Amazon DVD Rental By Post – where you are able to rent DVDs through a monthly subscription and have the discs sent to you through the post, which you then send back when you’re finished. There’s no limit to how long you can hang onto the DVD and no late-return fines, but you’re limited to a set number of discs per month and can only have 1 or 2 discs out at a time.

So far we’ve watched The Producers (third time I’ve seen it, but it’s a good film) and Æon Flux, which was a film we’d seen advertised but had never got around to seeing at the cinema. This is in fact a trend amongst the films we’ve put on our rental list – they’re all films which we probably wouldn’t buy, but either looked interesting or that we’d missed at the cinema. We’re only paying £6 per month for 2 films, and £3 is roughly the price of a cinema ticket here, except that you don’t have to get a taxi there and back and can watch it as many times as you want. You can also rent any one of the thousands of DVDs that Amazon have in stock, not just what happens to be on at the cinema or available at the local video rental shop.

As for Æon Flux – not a bad film; initially very confusing but it all gets explained at the end. Probably a 6/10 from me – very nice visuals but not the best acting I’ve seen.


  1. ‘£3 is roughly the price of a cinema ticket here’ — what? Cinema is around £6 a ticket nowadays. Hence why I’ve got the unlimited Cineworld promotion, which is really good (£10.99 a month). A housemate is signed up to LoveFilm, which is a similar service. Quite annoying the amount of unplayable scratched DVDs which come through.
    Æon Flux was better the second time I watched it (admittedly on a long-haul flight!) but I think I need to readdress the film, and watch it again.

  2. I’ve found Amazon rentals pretty good so far, but the discs are a bit scuffed in general. Day Of The Triffids had some annoying skips in places, but that’s been the worst of it so far.

  3. Really? I’ve yet to receive a skipping disc in the nearly two years I’ve been renting from Amazon, and that’s something like 300 DVDs!
    I have had to prompt them a couple of times when they haven’t acknowledged receipt of a returned disc, and two have gone missing in the post, but they’ve accepted full responsibility in each case.
    Oh, and whatever you do, don’t accidentally send one of your own DVDs instead of the rental one – their stated policy is to keep it. I haven’t done that myself, but it was mentioned in the small print when I accidentally returned an empty case… oops.

  4. I use Tesco DVD Rental: unlimited DVD rentals, much better value in my opinion.
    Check it out.

  5. Sorry Joe but….
    The public reviews suggest a very different reaction to Tesco dvds by post!
    Amazon per the original review, is probably the best one to go for impartiatly if you do your research.
    Tesco know nothing about dvd by post its just really just a rebrand for Lovefilm who seem to have a growing reputation, erm and not in a good way.
    This is the problem with buying into “wholesale” companies like Tesco/Asda-Walmart style take-over-all companies – the only thing different is a few pence and the “branding” which is frustrating when you can’t buy QoS if its missing in a product and you will end up wishing their was in fact more diversity.
    This won’t happen if everyone goes buying brands that aren’t making the market compete.
    Equally on a different note, I welcome Virgin’s digital service – even though Im sky customer as it will kick their butt to compete.
    Thats why I am going to plump for a proven product according to research into user reviews – Amazon.

  6. You could also have a look at By combining all the free trials available, its possible to rent dvds for approx. 4 months, all for free!